The Eastern Cape Higher Education Association (ECHEA) was founded and SEALS was incorporated as an academic library cooperative project during 1996. In 1998 the South East Academic Libraries System (SEALS) was established by the eight constituent academic libraries as an informal academic library forum in the Eastern Cape Province, South Africa. SEALS became a formal academic library consortium in 1999, under the auspices of ECHEA, with the vision to create a virtual library for the Eastern Cape to promote and enhance information literacy, education, research and economic development for all who need it. Funding received from the Andrew Mellon Foundation in 2000 enabled the implementation of the Millennium Library System for the SEALS Libraries as well as acquiring information literacy software for all sites.
The SEALS mission is to foster improvement in access to information resources, to support and enhance high standards of teaching, research and scholarship in member institutions by promoting resource sharing of human, material and information resources between academic institutions within the region.
Due to the deregistration of ECHEA the SEALS Trust was registered in 2007 to govern SEALS and to establish an appropriate legally constituent body to receive and administer collective grants and donations
Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Library and Information Services
Previously, Port Elizabeth Technikon, University of Port Elizabeth and Vista University, Port Elizabeth
Rhodes University Library
University of Fort Hare Library
Walter Sisulu University for Technology & Science Library and Information Services
Previously Border Technikon, Eastern Cape Technikon and University of Transkei